The Star Wars saga becomes available in striking display Tuesday when "Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones"
is released on DVD, the first major live-action film created directly from the digital source and digitally mastered by THX.
Now viewers can relive the "Episode II" adventure in the way writer and director George Lucas intended it to be seen. This feature becomes clear in the climactic Clone War battle with more than 200 Jedi fighting, the exhilarating Coruscant speedster chase and the 800-year-old Yoda wielding his lightsaber in the ultimate duel.
"Episode II" stars Ewan McGregor
as Obi-Wan Kenobi, Natalie Portman
as Padme Amidala and Hayden Christensen
as Anakin Skywalker. The two-disc DVD set ($29.98) is packed with more than 6 hours of extra material. The VHS ($24.98) has six deleted scenes and "Star War Connections," a featurette that explains the Star Wars story to new viewers. The movie itself runs 142 minutes.
The DVD, available in both Anamorphic widescreen and full screen, offers a commentary by Lucas and eight more scenes with introductions by Lucas, sound designer Ben Burtt and animation director Rob Coleman.
The creation of digital Yoda, Dexter Jettster and others is featured in the "From Puppets to Pixels" documentary. Also included are Burtt's documentary "Films Are Not Released: They Escape" and featurettes exploring the "Attack of the Clones" story line, John Williams' "Across the Stars" music video, theatrical teasers, trailers and 12 television spots, a photo gallery and a complete visual-effects breakdown.
Current video releases
"Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring" (due Tuesday from New Line Home Video: four-disc DVD set, $39.99 or two-cassette VHS, $24.95) This Special Extended Edition contains more than 30 hours of supplemental material and commentary.
"High Noon," "The Quiet Man" and "Rio Grande" (due Tuesday from Artisan Entertainment: on DVD; $19.98 each) Gary Cooper and Grace Kelly star in "High Noon" and John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara star in the other two classic westerns of 50 years ago (1950-52).
"Andrew Lloyd Webber: Masterpiece: Live From the Great Hall of the People - Beijing" (due Tuesday from Eagle Rock Entertainment: DVD or double VHS set, $24.98; CD with DVD, $34.98)
Includes more than 30 hits from shows such as "Phantom of the Opera," "Cats," "Evita," "Sunset Boulevard," "Jesus Christ Superstar," "Requiem" and "Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat."
"Mapp & Lucia, Series One" (Acorn Media: two-disc DVD set, $49.95; 800-999-0212) The British comedy series that also appeared on PBS features Prunella Scales, Geraldine McEwan and Nigel Hawthorne as the key quirky characters.
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